History of St. Edward

Although priests from Riverside came to Corona as early as 1887 to celebrate mass at a "preaching station," (private home), it was almost 20 years before the parish was established as a mission parish in 1896.

Fr. J.M. McCarthy built the first church, named after St. John the Baptist and dedicated in 1898 by Bishop Montgomery of the Diocese of Los Angeles. Established as a parish in 1908, it received its first resident pastor, Fr. William Power, the following year.

Fr. Clarence Kimmons replaced the original building with a "stone" church twenty years later. At its dedication in 1919, the name was changed to St. Edward, the Confessor.

The Sisters of St. Francis arrived in 1947 to oversee the building and operation of the convent and school. Additional units were added in 1948 and 1950. In 1962 the junior high building was constructed.

The present church and rectory were dedicated in 1951 during Msgr. Matthew J. Thompson's 32-year term as pastor. In 1980 the interior of the church was remodeled, the work being done mainly by parishioners. By 1988 more than 1800 families formed the parish.

As the population increased, St. Mel (1959), St. Matthew (1973), St. Mary Magdalene (1989) and Corpus Christi (1994) drew life from St. Edward's faithful. Known for its efforts at serving the needy in the community via a thrift store, homeless shelter, and the like, today St. Edward Parish is home to more than 5,500 families and provides nine weekend liturgies in either English or Spanish.